Marion finds a home at Tulsa

Human interest stories in a sports setting can be intriguing and one of the best this past year is DeAnza WR Brennan Marion (6-1, 185) who signed this past Monday to play for the University of Tulsa. After battles with housing issues and the loss of his uncle, not to mention moving 3,000 miles away from his childhood home, the young man from Pennsylvania knows the definition of perseverance.

"When I was in 11th grade I had offers and letters from everyone back there, but I transferred schools and no one knew where I was," Marion told back in October. "I had a good senior year at Greensburg-Salem High School (located in Greensburg, PA) which is like 10 minutes away from Pittsburgh, but I only had a partial scholarship from Temple and I didn't get a good score on the SAT so I headed out to Foothill."

At Foothill, a program that ran the ball a majority of the time, Marion was used as a tight end or an H-back, where he lined up and blocked the man in front of him.

Marion also suffered the loss of his uncle and after he attended the funeral, Marion decided a change of scenery was needed.

"Foothill was a good school, but it really wasn't a good fit for me," Marion said. "Me and my friend Chuck Thompson both decided to come down here and things have worked out well I think."

After the two arrived at DeAnza, Marion almost immediately was inserted into the starting lineup at wideout.

"I had a good year," Marion said. "I led the state in receiving yards (1,196 on 60 catches) and was second in touchdowns (16).

"I thought that would be enough to get some offers, but unfortunately I didn't really get any."

After the season, Marion and Thompson, who were roommates, came up short on their rent so they decided to stay close to where the spent most of their time anyway -- the DeAnza gym.

"I found out they were staying in the locker room at night," former DeAnza offensive coordinator and current San Jose City College coach Darrell Williams said. "When I asked them and they said they were and why they were I told them to come and stay with me for a while.

"They deserved a chance to succeed and do well and I wanted (Marion) to have a chance to earn a scholarship and the only way he could do that was to get his academics straight."

After working hard to get his grades in order, Marion was contacted by Tulsa's new coaching staff about sending them some tape. Eventually, an offer was forthcoming and the young man signed his papers this week.

"It feels really good to know I can go there and play for them," Marion said. "They have a good offense for me and I feel like I can help them be successful.

"They have new facilities going in and their staff is really nice and I think they can make me better. I wanted to be a part of something new and up-and-coming."

Williams couldn't stop talking about what it means to have someone with a good heart succeed through adversity.

"He's such a great kid and a hard-worker," Williams said. "Tulsa is getting a really good player and, more importantly, a great person."

Marion will finish up his classes this month and head east to Tulsa to begin summer workouts with his new team shortly after that.

Even if he never sees the field for the Golden Hurricanes, at least Marion will always have a roof over his head and a place to call home.

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